Three key steps for an ERP performance review

Enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems that are outdated and haven't been updated are in dire need of a business process review process to assess the current value of the system.

08/16/2017


Image courtesy: Bob Vavra, CFE Media

Like annual employee performance reviews, an enterprise resource planning (ERP) system needs one, too. When it comes to ERP performance, many enterprises think it is a one-and-done proposition to implement an ERP solution, especially given the time and resources devoted to its deployment.

However, if an ERP has fallen into the category of a "legacy" system—one that is outdated and/or has not been updated—it's time for a performance review. Are users increasingly not using it to its fullest or finding manual ways to accomplish what the ERP is supposed to be doing? Are users enthusiastic about using it, especially younger staff members? How old is it? 

It's crucial to measure how well the ERP is currently performing to decide if a new ERP would better serve the enterprise or if the company can continue to depend on it. A business process review will provide the necessary answers.

In an ERP performance review, two overarching questions stand out:

  • Is it time to begin the process of upgrading the company's ERP?
  • By staying put, is the company missing out on other benefits?

There are three major factors to consider if an ERP is providing the best possible performance or if it's time to update it. An ERP selection project is a major undertaking and one that deserves serious analysis of the value and risks associated with it.

1. Consider the value of the current ERP

The best first step in an ERP performance review process is an unbiased assessment of the value of the current ERP. Determine whether it is keeping its promises in terms of value. Assess whether or not it performs as it did on Day One.

Think about these five areas of value:

  • Does the ERP still support all current business features and functions?
  • How well is the ERP integrated with all external systems, applications, customers and suppliers?
  • How is the end-user technology operating?

    • Look and feel: Is it intuitive?
    • Workflow: Does it synchronize with our current process?
    • Is it fully integrated with Windows?

  • Does it provide the company with real-time information and business intelligence, with these must-haves:

    • Dashboards
    • Scorecards
    • Data cubes
    • Report publishing

  • Culture: Does the ERP fit with how the company does business today?

2. Examine potential risk

Oftentimes, risk is only discussed when the business is in the middle of a meltdown following an unexpected development. However, it's vital to look at risks that threaten the health of the system on a routine basis. Consider these questions about risk:

  • How is the integrity and day-to-day performance of the hardware/software? Has it been updated on schedule? Are all modules working as initially designed?
  • How well is the vendor supporting the system? Is that support in line with the initial contract? How expensive is it?
  • How secure is the ERP? Cybercrimes are increasing every day; is the system protected?
  • Does the information technology (IT) staff have too much to handle in the way of support and maintenance?
  • How well has the system kept up with industry standards/government regulations and compliance issues?

3. Analyze business processes

Business process analysis is where the heavy lifting really comes in. It's an important step and one that many enterprises are unwilling or unable to take. It's an assessment of areas of the business that might need transformation to become more efficient and cost conscious. Such an analysis forms the structure and identifies the information needed to develop new and improved business processes. Review the current state of operations, implement process improvements and deliver a confident business case that justifies the ERP decision.

This article originally appeared on Ultra Consultants' website. Ultra Consultants is a CFE Media content partner. Edited by Hannah Cox, content specialist, hcox@cfemedia.com.



The Engineers' Choice Awards highlight some of the best new control, instrumentation and automation products as chosen by...
The System Integrator Giants program lists the top 100 system integrators among companies listed in CFE Media's Global System Integrator Database.
Each year, a panel of Control Engineering and Plant Engineering editors and industry expert judges select the System Integrator of the Year Award winners in three categories.
This eGuide illustrates solutions, applications and benefits of machine vision systems.
Learn how to increase device reliability in harsh environments and decrease unplanned system downtime.
This eGuide contains a series of articles and videos that considers theoretical and practical; immediate needs and a look into the future.
Women in engineering; Engineering Leaders Under 40; PID benefits and drawbacks; Ladder logic; Cloud computing
Robotic integration and cloud connections; SCADA and cybersecurity; Motor efficiency standards; Open- and closed-loop control; Augmented reality
Controller programming; Safety networks; Enclosure design; Power quality; Safety integrity levels; Increasing process efficiency
This article collection contains several articles on how advancements in vision system designs, computing power, algorithms, optics, and communications are making machine vision more cost effective than ever before.
Featured articles highlight technologies that enable the Industrial Internet of Things, IIoT-related products and strategies to get data more easily to the user.
This digital report will explore several aspects of how IIoT will transform manufacturing in the coming years.

Find and connect with the most suitable service provider for your unique application. Start searching the Global System Integrator Database Now!

Cloud, mobility, and remote operations; SCADA and contextual mobility; Custom UPS empowering a secure pipeline
Infrastructure for natural gas expansion; Artificial lift methods; Disruptive technology and fugitive gas emissions
Mobility as the means to offshore innovation; Preventing another Deepwater Horizon; ROVs as subsea robots; SCADA and the radio spectrum
Automation Engineer; Wood Group
System Integrator; Cross Integrated Systems Group
Jose S. Vasquez, Jr.
Fire & Life Safety Engineer; Technip USA Inc.
This course focuses on climate analysis, appropriateness of cooling system selection, and combining cooling systems.
This course will help identify and reveal electrical hazards and identify the solutions to implementing and maintaining a safe work environment.
This course explains how maintaining power and communication systems through emergency power-generation systems is critical.
The Engineers' Choice Awards highlight some of the best new control, instrumentation and automation products as chosen by...
The System Integrator Giants program lists the top 100 system integrators among companies listed in CFE Media's Global System Integrator Database.
Each year, a panel of Control Engineering and Plant Engineering editors and industry expert judges select the System Integrator of the Year Award winners in three categories.
This eGuide illustrates solutions, applications and benefits of machine vision systems.
Learn how to increase device reliability in harsh environments and decrease unplanned system downtime.
This eGuide contains a series of articles and videos that considers theoretical and practical; immediate needs and a look into the future.
Women in engineering; Engineering Leaders Under 40; PID benefits and drawbacks; Ladder logic; Cloud computing
Robotic integration and cloud connections; SCADA and cybersecurity; Motor efficiency standards; Open- and closed-loop control; Augmented reality
Controller programming; Safety networks; Enclosure design; Power quality; Safety integrity levels; Increasing process efficiency
This article collection contains several articles on how advancements in vision system designs, computing power, algorithms, optics, and communications are making machine vision more cost effective than ever before.
Featured articles highlight technologies that enable the Industrial Internet of Things, IIoT-related products and strategies to get data more easily to the user.
This digital report will explore several aspects of how IIoT will transform manufacturing in the coming years.

Find and connect with the most suitable service provider for your unique application. Start searching the Global System Integrator Database Now!

Cloud, mobility, and remote operations; SCADA and contextual mobility; Custom UPS empowering a secure pipeline
Infrastructure for natural gas expansion; Artificial lift methods; Disruptive technology and fugitive gas emissions
Mobility as the means to offshore innovation; Preventing another Deepwater Horizon; ROVs as subsea robots; SCADA and the radio spectrum
Automation Engineer; Wood Group
System Integrator; Cross Integrated Systems Group
Jose S. Vasquez, Jr.
Fire & Life Safety Engineer; Technip USA Inc.
This course focuses on climate analysis, appropriateness of cooling system selection, and combining cooling systems.
This course will help identify and reveal electrical hazards and identify the solutions to implementing and maintaining a safe work environment.
This course explains how maintaining power and communication systems through emergency power-generation systems is critical.
The Engineers' Choice Awards highlight some of the best new control, instrumentation and automation products as chosen by...
The System Integrator Giants program lists the top 100 system integrators among companies listed in CFE Media's Global System Integrator Database.
Each year, a panel of Control Engineering and Plant Engineering editors and industry expert judges select the System Integrator of the Year Award winners in three categories.
This eGuide illustrates solutions, applications and benefits of machine vision systems.
Learn how to increase device reliability in harsh environments and decrease unplanned system downtime.
This eGuide contains a series of articles and videos that considers theoretical and practical; immediate needs and a look into the future.
Women in engineering; Engineering Leaders Under 40; PID benefits and drawbacks; Ladder logic; Cloud computing
Robotic integration and cloud connections; SCADA and cybersecurity; Motor efficiency standards; Open- and closed-loop control; Augmented reality
Controller programming; Safety networks; Enclosure design; Power quality; Safety integrity levels; Increasing process efficiency
This article collection contains several articles on how advancements in vision system designs, computing power, algorithms, optics, and communications are making machine vision more cost effective than ever before.
Featured articles highlight technologies that enable the Industrial Internet of Things, IIoT-related products and strategies to get data more easily to the user.
This digital report will explore several aspects of how IIoT will transform manufacturing in the coming years.

Find and connect with the most suitable service provider for your unique application. Start searching the Global System Integrator Database Now!

Cloud, mobility, and remote operations; SCADA and contextual mobility; Custom UPS empowering a secure pipeline
Infrastructure for natural gas expansion; Artificial lift methods; Disruptive technology and fugitive gas emissions
Mobility as the means to offshore innovation; Preventing another Deepwater Horizon; ROVs as subsea robots; SCADA and the radio spectrum
Automation Engineer; Wood Group
System Integrator; Cross Integrated Systems Group
Jose S. Vasquez, Jr.
Fire & Life Safety Engineer; Technip USA Inc.
This course focuses on climate analysis, appropriateness of cooling system selection, and combining cooling systems.
This course will help identify and reveal electrical hazards and identify the solutions to implementing and maintaining a safe work environment.
This course explains how maintaining power and communication systems through emergency power-generation systems is critical.
click me